Buffalo in the ’80s: Holiday shopping at Hills

By Steve Cichon

If you were getting ready for Christmas in 1985, one place you were likely to turn to figure out what you wanted or what you wanted to buy was the weekly Hills ad.

There were eleven Hills location around Western New York in 1984, making the discount retailer just about ubiquitous — and a likely stop for most Western New York shoppers over the 20 years the company operated here.

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By the time the local Hills stores were bought out by Ames in 1999, there were 10 Hills locations. With a combined 20 stores, Ames closed its local outlets in 2002.



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Steve Cichon

Steve Cichon is a proud Buffalonian helping the world experience the city he loves. writing about the people, places, and ideas that make Buffalo unique and special. The storyteller and historian has written six books, worn bow ties since the 80s, and is the News Director at WECK Radio. A 25 year Buffalo media veteran, Steve's contributed more than 1400 Buffalo History stories to The Buffalo News, worked at WIVB-TV, Empire Sports Network, and spent ten years as a newsman and News Director at WBEN Radio. He's also put his communication skills to work as an adjunct professor, a producer of PBS documentaries, and even run for Erie County Clerk. Steve's Buffalo roots run deep: all eight of his great-grandparents called Buffalo home, with his first ancestors arriving here in 1827.